Are you feeling uncomfortable?

Being comfortable being uncomfortable – a phrase I have heard a lot lately and that really resonates with me. There are many areas of our lives that this statement applies to. It could apply to our health and fitness, whether it be pushing through pain limits to improve our fitness and performance or eating foods that we know are good for us that we perhaps don’t favour, take for instance Brussel sprouts!

This saying applies also to our professional lives. Let’s consider possible instances of discomfort for researchers. It could apply to learning new techniques that you are not comfortable doing, but are necessary to learn in order to stretch the boundaries of your research. It may apply to presenting your work in non-academic terminology to broad audiences or philanthropists, or it could be self-promotion on social media channels to help raise awareness of issues and importance of your research.

When we are comfortable we are not pushing the limits enough. To be truly innovative we need to bite off more than we can chew. Being comfortable will keep you in the status quo, pushing the limits and testing the boundaries will allow you to break through the glass ceiling of innovation to achieve much more than you though possible. But these breakthroughs only come from a willingness to be uncomfortable and a possibility of failure, whatever that may encompass in your situation. Fearing the worst can stop us from moving forward, we run away from the difficult challenges because of the fear or perhaps because of the fear of our governing institution and superiors. We need to take every opportunity to run towards our fears, if we fear something it may be exactly the thing we should be doing.

So how can we become comfortable being uncomfortable and what does all this have to do with knowledge translation. We need researchers and research organisations to be much more innovative if we are to achieve success in translating our research into tangible real life solutions, be it products, service delivery, or other innovations. Knowledge translation requires innovative thinking and a willingness to try new ways of thinking, learning and doing. Developing new skills and feeling supported through mentorship and coaching is one way that we can begin to feel comfortable to change our skill sets, to innovate more, and to grow as a researcher.

Knowledge Translation Australia provides training through workshops and support through individual coaching, that is innovative by nature, to help researchers to develop the new skills that are needed to translate research into tangible benefits, be it commercial or social. We are here to help you be innovative in your approach to research and gain the benefits associated with that. If you would like to know more about how you can push your boundaries to make things happen register for a free 20 min coaching session with me.

In the meantime you might be interested to read our quick start guide to KT.